Top Consumer Companies To Invest In Right Now

Although we don’t believe in timing the market or panicking over market movements, we do like to keep an eye on big changes — just in case they’re material to our investing thesis.

What: Shares of CapitalSource (NYSE: CSE  ) soared 20% today after bank holding company PacWest Bancorp (NASDAQ: PACW  ) agreed to acquire the financial services specialist in a deal valued at about $2.3 billion.

So what: The deal values CapitalSource at about $11.64 per share — 0.2837 of a PacWest share and $2.47 in cash — and represents a premium of about 18% to its closing price on Monday. PacWest is making the move to expand its presence in southern California, and judging by its own stock’s 6% bump today, Wall Street seems pleased with the price management is paying to do it.

Now what: The combined bank will be the eighth-largest in California, with about $15.4 billion in assets and 96 branches in the state. “The combination of these two franchises will create a formidable company going forward, with a strong balance sheet and capital base, attractive margins and good earnings momentum,” said PacWest CEO Matt Wagner. So while CapitalSource is likely all popped out at this point, PacWest’s newly boosted lending presence might be worth looking into.

Top Consumer Companies To Invest In Right Now: Hormel Foods Corporation (HRL)

Hormel Foods Corporation processes, markets, and sells consumer-branded meat and food products. The company operates in five segments: Grocery Products, Refrigerated Foods, Jennie-O Turkey Store, Specialty Foods, and International & Other. The Grocery Products segment offers shelf-stable food products, including canned luncheon meats, shelf-stable microwaveable meals, stews, chilies, hash, meat spreads, flour and corn tortillas, salsas, and tortilla chips in the retail market. The Refrigerated Foods segment provides branded and unbranded pork and beef products for retail, foodservice, and fresh product customers. The Jennie-O Turkey Store segment offers branded and unbranded turkey products for retail, foodservice, and fresh product customers. The Specialty Foods segment is involved in the packaging and sale of various sugar and sugar substitute products, salt and pepper products, liquid portion products, dessert mixes, ready-to-drink products, sports nutrition products, g elatin products, and private label canned meats to retail and foodservice customers. This segment also processes, markets, and sells nutritional food products and supplements to hospitals, nursing homes, and other marketers of nutritional products. The International and Other segment manufactures, markets, and sells its products internationally. Hormel Foods Corporation sells its products through sales personnel, as well as through independent brokers and distributors primarily in the United States, Australia, Canada, China, England, Japan, Mexico, Micronesia, the Philippines, and South Korea. The company was formerly known as George A. Hormel & Company and changed its name to Hormel Foods Corporation in January 1995. Hormel Foods Corporation was founded in 1891 and is based in Austin, Minnesota.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Maria Armental and Tess Stynes var popups = dojo.query(“.socialByline .popC”); ]

    Hormel Foods Corp.(HRL) said its fiscal second-quarter earnings rose 12%, as the packaged-foods maker posted stronger sales in its main refrigerated-foods business. However, the company said it expects earnings for the year to hit the low-end of its guidance, as higher pork, beef, turkey and avocado costs–driven by tight raw material supplies–weigh on margins. Shares fell 2.6% to $47.26.

  • [By Steven Russolillo]

    WATCH FOR:  No major economic data on dap. American Eagle, Booz Allen, Eaton Vance(EV), Hormel Foods(HRL), L Brands(LB), Lowe’s(LOW), NetApp, PetSmart(PETM), Renren(RENN), Sina, Target, Tiffany, Trina Solar(TSL) and Williams-Sonoma(WSM) are among companies scheduled to report quarterly results.

  • [By Sue Chang and Saumya Vaishampayan]

    Hormel Foods Corp. shares (HRL)  shed 2.8%. The food manufacturer posted second-quarter earnings of 52 cents a share, which missed Wall Street expectations. Hormel said it expects full-year earnings to be toward the lower end of its previous outlook of $2.17 to $2.27 a share, pressured by higher costs of pork, beef, turkey and avocado.

Top Consumer Companies To Invest In Right Now: Wasgau Produktions & Handels AG (MSH)

Wasgau Produktions & Handels AG is a Germany-based retailer and producer of food articles. The Company divides its business activities into the two main segments Wholesale and Retail. The Wholesale’s businesses include seven Cash and Carry markets for restaurateurs and wholesale customers, as well as commercial businesses of the holding company WASGAU Produktions & Handels AG, which are supported by its subsidiary WASGAU Dienstleistungs & Logistik GmbH, active within warehouse management and transportation. The Operations within the Retail segment are mainly carried out through Company’s subsidiaries WASGAU Metzgerei GmbH and WASGAU Baeckerei & Konditorei GmbH, which produce and supply its stores with a variety of meats and bakery products, respectively. As of December 31, 2011, the Company operated through 24 affiliated companies and subsidiaries located in Germany. Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Benjamin Pimentel]

    With H-P and JD in the spotlight, the tech-heavy Nasdaq Composite Index (COMP)  rose almost 23 points to close at 4,154. The Morgan Stanley High Tech 35 Index (MSH)  and the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index (SOX)  were up a fraction.

  • [By Benjamin Pimentel]

    The Nasdaq Composite Index (COMP)  fell 0.4% to close at 4,052. The Morgan Stanley High Tech 35 Index (MSH)  and the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index (SOX)  each gained a fraction.

  • [By Benjamin Pimentel]

    But the Nasdaq Composite Index (COMP)  edged higher by 0.2% to close at 4,276, even as the Morgan Stanley High Tech 35 Index (MSH)  and the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index (SOX) were each down a fraction.

  • [By Benjamin Pimentel]

    The Nasdaq Composite Index (COMP)  gave up 6 points to close at 4,352. But the benchmark ended the week up 1%. The Morgan Stanley High Tech 35 Index (MSH)  also was down a fraction on Friday, while the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index (SOX) was up 0.7%.

Top Consumer Companies To Invest In Right Now: Alliance One International Inc (AOI)

Alliance One International, Inc., incorporated on October 19, 1994, is a leaf tobacco merchant. The Company is engaged in purchasing, processing, packing, storing and shipping tobacco to manufacturers of cigarettes and other consumer tobacco products globally. The Company deals primarily in flue-cured, burley, and oriental tobaccos that is used in international brand cigarettes. The Company’s revenues are primarily comprised of sales of processed tobacco and fees charged for processing and related services to these manufacturers of tobacco products. The Company does not manufacture cigarettes or other consumer tobacco products.

Tobacco is primarily purchased directly from suppliers with small quantities still sold at auction. In non-auction markets, the Company purchases tobacco directly from suppliers and the Company assumes the risk of matching the quantities and grades required by its customers to the entire crop it must purchase under contract. The Compa ny purchases tobacco in more than 35 countries. During the year ended March 31, 2013 (fiscal 2013), approximately 30% of the Company’s purchases of tobacco were from the South America operating segment, approximately 5% were from the Value Added Services operating segment and approximately 65% from the Other Regions operating segment.

The Company processes tobacco to meet each customer’s specifications as to quality, yield, chemistry, particle size, moisture content and other characteristics. Unprocessed tobacco is a semi-perishable commodity that generally must be processed within a relatively short period of time to prevent fermentation or deterioration in quality. The Company processes tobacco in more than 35 owned and third-party facilities around the world including Argentina, Brazil, China, Zimbabwe, Jordan, Guatemala, India, Tanzania, the United States, Malawi, Thailand, Germany, Indonesia, Macedonia, Bulgaria and Turkey. These facilities encompass all export locations of flue-cured, burley and oriental tobaccos! . In addition, the Company has entered into contracts, joint ventures and other arrangements for the purchase of tobacco grown in substantially all other countries that produce export-quality flue-cured and burley tobacco. The Company also sells a small amount of processed but unthreshed flue-cured and burley tobacco in loose-leaf and bundle form to certain customers. In 2013, Alliance One delivered approximately 41% of its tobacco sales to customers in Europe and approximately 19% to customers in the United States. In 2013, these Belgium sales accounted for 20% of sales to customers in Europe. The Company ships tobacco to manufacturers of cigarettes and other consumer tobacco products located in approximately 90 countries around the world as designated by these manufacturers.

The Company competes with Japan Tobacco, Inc. (JTI), Philip Morris International, Inc. (PMI), and Imperial Tobacco Group PLC.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Sally Jones] ng>Predictability: 1 out of 5 Stars

    Down 12% over 12 months, Alliance One International Inc. has a market cap of $251.53 million; its shares were traded at around $2.86, which is 2.4% above its 52-week low. The P/E ratio is 65.10, and the P/B ratio is 0.80.

    Alliance One is a tobacco leaf supplier serving the world’s largest cigarette manufacturers. The company purchases, processes, packs, stores and ships tobacco to manufacturers of cigarettes and other consumer tobacco products throughout the world. Alliance One deals mainly in tobacco types used in international brand cigarettes. As a tobacco leaf merchant, Alliance One purchases tobacco grown in over 45 countries and serves cigarette manufacturers in over 90 countries.

    The company reported financial results for the quarter ended June 30, 2013, with a net loss of $36.9 million, down further from a net loss in the same quarter last year of 30.7 million. The net loss translates to $(0.42) per basic share for the reporting quarter.

    Historical share pricing, revenue and net income:

    [ Enlarge Image ]

    Guru Action: As of June 30, 2013, Seth Klarman holds 7,669,969 shares, valued at $29.14 million, and weighting his portfolio at 0.72%. In the second quarter, he sold 461,625 shares at an average price of $3.74 for a loss of 23.5%.

    In six quarters of double-digit losses, Klarman has averaged a loss of 31% on 5,800,000 shares bought at an average price of $4.17 per share. He has averaged a loss of 38% on 1,798,473 shares sold at an average price of $4.59 per share.

    Seth Klarman is one of six gurus holding AOI as of June 30, 2013, and there is recent insider trading.

    Kinross Gold Corporation (KGC)

    Predictability: 1 out of 5 Stars

    Down 54% over 12 months, Kinross Gold Corporation has a market cap of $5.32 billion; its shares were traded at around $4.66, 2.8% above its 52-week low. The P/B ratio is 0.80. The dividend yield is 3.44%.

    K inross Gold Corporati

  • [By John Emerson]

    As noted previously, I rode the elevator up and then back down on Camtek (CAMT), a tiny Israeli automated optical inspection (AOI) company. By late 2008 the company had fallen to below $1 per share. Both of Camtek’s larger rivals, RTEC and ORBK, had dropped to absurdly low levels by November 2008. I used the opportunity to switch out of CAMT and some of my other losing propositions in favor of these superior companies. In the process, I created a large amount of tax loss carry-forwards which would allow me to minimize my future taxation when I decided to sell these cyclical entities.

  • [By John Emerson]

    Camtek was an automated optical inspection (AOI) company that designed and manufactured inspection systems for printed circuit boards (PCB). Further, they were in the process of designing systems to inspect semiconductors as well. The logic for investing in AOI companies was simple: Many circuit boards still employed visual inspection and circuits were getting smaller every year.

Top Consumer Companies To Invest In Right Now: Calavo Growers Inc (CVGW)

Calavo Growers, Inc. (Calavo), incorporated on January 5, 2001, is a provider of value-added fresh food. The Company is engaged in the marketing and distributing avocados, prepared avocados, and other perishable foods allows them to deliver a wide array of fresh and prepared food products to food distributors, produce wholesalers, supermarkets, convenience stores, and restaurants on a worldwide basis. The Company procures avocados principally from California, Mexico, and Chile. Through its various operating facilities, it sort, pack, and/or ripen avocados, tomatoes and/or Hawaiian grown papayas. Additionally, it also produces salsa and prepares ready-to-eat produce and deli products. It distributes its products both domestically and internationally and reports its operations in three different business segments: Fresh products, Calavo Foods and Renaissance Food Group, LLC (RFG).

Fresh products

The Company’s Fresh products business grades, size s, packs, cools, and ripens (if desired) avocados for delivery to its customers. It operates two packinghouses and three operating and distributing facilities that handle avocados across the United States.Calavo markets California avocados. In California, the growing area stretches from San Diego County to Monterey County, with the majority of the growing areas located approximately 100 miles north and south of Los Angeles County. The storage life of fresh avocados is limited. It generally ranges from one to four weeks, depending upon the maturity of the fruit, the growing methods used, and the handling conditions in the distribution chain. The Company sells avocados to a diverse group of supermarket chains, wholesalers, food service and other distributors, under the Calavo family of brand labels, as well as private labels. From time to time, some of its larger customers seek short-term sales contracts that formalize their pricing and volume requirements. California avocados delivered to the Company’s packinghouses are graded, size! d, packed, cooled and, frequently, ripened for delivery to customers. The Company imports avocados from Mexico, Chile, Peru, New Zealand and the Dominican Republic. It’s diversified avocado sources provide a level of supply stability that may, over time, help solidify the demand for avocados among consumers in all markets it distribute to.

The Company also handles avocados from Chile, Peru and New Zealand, most of which are on a consignment basis with its growers. Pursuant to its joint venture agreement with M5, Calavo de Chile is the primary contact with its Chilean avocado sources. It has invested in the Aweta AFS (acoustic firmness sensor) technology and equipment. It has three Aweta systems in use in the United States, which, it believe, can effectively meet its customers’ demand for conditioned fruit. It has developed various display techniques and packages that appeal to consumers and, in particular, impulse buyers. Some of its techniques includ e the bagging of avocados and the strategic display of the bags within the produce section of retail stores. The majority of its sales are generated from tomatoes and papayas. Tomatoes are primarily handled on a consigned basis, while papayas are handled on a pooling basis, similar to the California avocado pool previously described.

Calavo Foods

The Company’s Calavo Foods business procures avocados, processes avocados into a wide variety of guacamole products, and distributes the processed product to its customers. All of its prepared avocado products shipped to North America are cold pasteurized and include both frozen and fresh guacamole. The Calavo Foods segment was originally conceived as a mechanism to stabilize the price of California avocados by reducing the volume of avocados available to the marketplace.The Company utilizes ultra high pressure machines which are designed to cold pasteurize its guacamole products. Using high pressure on ly, this procedure substantially destroys the cells of any b! acteria t! hat could lead to spoilage, food safety, or oxidation issues. Once the procedure is complete, its packaged guacamole is cased and shipped to various retail and food service customers throughout the markets its service. Its IQF line provides food service and retail customers with peeled avocado halves that are ripe and suitable for immediate consumption. These halves were frozen, packaged and shipped out of Mexicali to warehouses located in the United States., and, ultimately, to its customers. The Company’s line of salsa will further diversify its product offerings and will be a natural complement to its ultra-high-pressure guacamole, as well as its Calavo tortilla chips.

RFG

The Company’s RFG business produces markets and distributes nationally a portfolio of healthy, lifestyle products for consumers via the retail channel. RFG is a fresh-food company that produces, markets, and distributes nationally a portfolio of healthy, products for consu mers via the retail channel.RFG products range from fresh-cut fruit, ready-to-eat vegetables, recipe-ready vegetables and deli meat products. RFG sells under the labels of Garden Highway Fresh Cut, Garden Highway, and Garden Highway Chef Essentials to a wide range of customers. RFG products range from fresh-cut fruit, ready-to-eat vegetables, recipe-ready vegetables and deli meat products. RFG sells under the labels of Garden Highway Fresh Cut, Garden Highway, and Garden Highway Chef Essentials to a range of customers.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By John Udovich]

    Just when you think the global warming (excuse me, climate change) warnings could not get anymore hysterical or goofier (Niagara Falls and the Great Lakes have frozen over after all), Chipotle Mexican Grill, Inc (NYSE: CMG) is sounding the alarm (which may rally all of the Sofritas vegan tofu eaters of America) over its potential threat to guacamole, but small cap avocado stock Calavo Growers, Inc (NASDAQ: CVGW) continues to grow investor returns no matter what the weather is doing and has outperformed PowerShares DB Agriculture Fund (NYSEARCA: DBA). First and as noted by ThinkProgress.org, Chipotle Mexican Grill’s latest Annual Form 8-K reported:

  • [By Laura Brodbeck]

    Monday

    Earnings Releases Expected: Sonic Corp (NASDAQ: SONC), Calavo Growers, Inc. (NASDAQ: CVGW), Zep Inc. (NYSE: ZEP) Economic Releases Expected:  Spanish services PMI, Italian services PMI, French services PMI, German services PMI, eurozone services PMI, British services PMI, eurozone investor confidence, German CPI, Australian trade balance

    Tuesday

  • [By Seth Jayson]

    Calling all cash flows
    When you are trying to buy the market’s best stocks, it’s worth checking up on your companies’ free cash flow once a quarter or so, to see whether it bears any relationship to the net income in the headlines. That’s what we do with this series. Today, we’re checking in on Calavo Growers (Nasdaq: CVGW  ) , whose recent revenue and earnings are plotted below.

Top Consumer Companies To Invest In Right Now: Suntory Beverage & Food Ltd (STBFY)

Suntory Beverage & Food Limited is principally engaged in the manufacture and sale of beverages and food. The Company operates in two geographical segments. The Domestic segment is engaged in the manufacture and sale of various soft drinks within Japan, such as coffee drinks, mineral water, green tea drinks, tea drinks, carbonated drinks, fruit juice drinks, functional beverages, milk beverages, and food for specified health use, as well as syrup for general and business usage. The International segment is engaged in the manufacture and sale of carbonated drinks, fruit juice drinks, health food, seasoning, tea-based beverages and others, with operations in Europe, Oceania, Asia and the Americas. As of May 29, 2013, the Company had 80 subsidiaries and 10 associated companies. On October 15, 2013, the Company acquired Lucozade Ribena Suntory Limited. On December 12, 2013, the Company acquired Suntory Beverage & Food Europe Limited. Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Charles Sizemore]

    Let’s start with Suntory Beverage & Food Limited (STBFY),which recently completed its acquisition of Beam Inc., formerly the purest play on bourbon. Beam was the owner of the eponymous Jim Beam brand, as well as the higher-end Maker’s Mark and Knob Creek and the lower-end Old Crow. Suntory is Japan’s leading spirits company, though most Americans will be unfamiliar with its Japanese whisky brands, such as Yamazaki and Hakushu. (Note for booze snobs: Japanese whisky—like Scotch and Canadian whisky—is correctly spelled “whisky.” American bourbon, Tennessee whiskey and Irish whiskey are correctly spelled “whiskey.”)

Top Consumer Companies To Invest In Right Now: Verifone Systems Inc.(PAY)

Verifone Systems, Inc. designs, markets, and services electronic payment solutions in North America and internationally. It provides system solutions, including countertop electronic payment systems that accepts magnetic, smart card, contactless/ radio frequency identification(RFID) cards, and near field communication(NFC) enabled mobile phones; secure PIN pads that support credit and debit transactions; and wireless system solutions that support Internet protocol-based code division multiple access, general packet radio service, bluetooth, and wireless fidelity technologies. The company also offers products for consumer-activated functionality at the point of sale; contactless/NFC payment solutions consisting of contactless readers primarily for consumer-activated transactions with contactless cards, tokens, and NFC-enabled mobile phones; and Gemstone family of products comprising integrated electronic payment systems for petroleum companies. In addition, it provides serv er-based payment processing software and middleware; unattended and self-service payments hardware and software integration modules, such as vending machines, ATMs, ticketing kiosks, petroleum dispensers, public transportation turnstiles and buses, self-checkout, bill payment, and photo finishing kiosks; retail bank branch solutions; mass transportation solutions; and network access solutions. Further, the company offers client services, customized application development, advertising publishing, taxi payments and advertising, cardholder data security, annual software maintenance program, and repair services. It serves financial institutions, payment processors, petroleum companies, large retailers, taxi fleets, government organizations, healthcare companies, independent sales organizations, and advertisers. The company was formerly known as VeriFone Holdings, Inc. and changed its name to VeriFone Systems, Inc in May 2010. VeriFone Systems, Inc. is headquartered in San Jose , California.

Advisors’ Opinion:

  • [By Rich Bieglmeier]

    [Related -VeriFone Systems Inc (PAY) Q1 Earnings Preview: Pop and Drop?]

    Now, the neighborhood target is supposedly one of the largest in the country, and I haven’t visited any other; so, the switch might be a beta project or nationwide. In any case, it is business for PAY.

  • [By WWW.DAILYFINANCE.COM]

    Slow but steady — that seems to be the new mantra here on Wall Street. The Dow Industrials and the S&P 500 plowed further into record territory on Friday. The catalyst for today’s advance was the monthly jobs report, which showed the total number of people employed finally topped the 2008 peak it hit just before the Great Recession took hold. The Dow Jones industrial average (^DJI) gained 88 points, the Standard & Poor’s 500 index (^GPSC) rose 9, and the Nasdaq composite (^IXIC) gained 25 points. Financial stocks helped lead the advance. Goldman Sachs (GS) and American Express (AXP) both gained more than 2 percent. Bank of America (BAC) rose 1 percent on reports that it’s in talks with the Justice Department to settle another set of probes into the bank’s handling of mortgages leading up to and during the financial crisis. News reports say the company could pay more than $12 billion, which is more than it earned in all of 2013. But this could allow Bank of America to finally put this long-running problem behind it. Its stock has been virtually flat over the past 6 months. Amazon (AMZN) posted a strong gain for second straight day, rising 2 percent, on indications that it’s about to enter the smartphone business. And Sears (SHLD) gained nearly 2 percent on a Reuters report that the company’s chairman has held talks with outgoing Ford (F) CEO Alan Mulally, sparking rumors that he might head the retailer’s turnaround effort. Elsewhere, Hertz (HRZ) drove into a ditch, sliding 9 percent after saying it will restate earnings from 2011 through 2013 because of accounting issues. Diamond Foods (DMND) fell 11 percent. Its quarterly loss widened, due to higher wholesale prices for nuts. But Vail Resorts (MTN), Men’s Wearhouse (MW), and VeriFone (PAY) all gained after beating expectations. Vail was up 6 percent; Men’s Wearhouse rose 5½ percent; and VeriFone jumped 9 percent. Demand for its merchant payment systems has been helped by growing con

  • [By Steven Russolillo]

    WATCH FOR: May ADP Jobs Survey (8:15 a.m. Eastern Time): seen +210K; previously +220K. April US Trade Deficit (8:30): seen $40.9B; previously $40.4B. First Quarter Productivity (8:30, second read): seen -3.1%; previously -1.7%. First Quarter Unit Labor Costs (8:30, second read): seen +5.5%: previously +4.2%. May ISM Non-Manufacturing PMI (10:00): seen 55.2; previously 55.2. Analogic(ALOG), Ciena(CIEN), Cooper, Diamond Foods(DMND), J.M. Smucker(SJM), Joy Global(JOY), Piedmont Natural Gas(PNY), UTi Worldwide, Vail Resorts, Vera Bradley(VRA) and VeriFone(PAY) are among companies scheduled to report quarterly results.

  • [By Suravi Thacker]

    Provider of electronic payment solutions, VeriFone Systems (PAY), lit up the Street with its first-quarter results by beating analysts’ expectations. Investors were overwhelmed by the company’s surprising performance, sending shares higher.